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Legalising cannabis for Medicinal Markets
What is Medical cannabis? (CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT)
POTS Consulting are working in partnership with Sellbridge and World Help Initiative to advise the government of Zimbabwe on a workable solution for the legalisation, registration, growing and processing of cannabis for 'Medicinal CBD', within Zimbabwe.
Creating a framework for the smooth implementation of a plan to control and regulate the growing and processing of cannabis for the 'Medicinal CBD' market, and export around the globe.
In order for this framework to work, several important elements must be included:
The creation of a "Green Bank" within the country to finance cannabis growers.
An industrial scale processing plant located near to the grower associations.
The market for the CBD has to be secured before implementation of any cannabis growing.
Power and water solutions have to be implemented within the country to support an industrial scale cannabis processing facility.
Structure of the Project
The land allocation system in Zimbabwe has served the Zimbabwean people well over the last centuries. Land was allocated to each and every Zimbabwean citizen by the state, free of any charge. This system was incorporated so that every family could support and feed themselves, without the need for state intervention.
This system worked well when every homestead was either farming crops or raising animals. People could barter with each other to obtain what was needed to live.
With the introduction of paper money into the country, Zimbabweans can now no longer support themselves with the ‘barter’ system alone. In fact poverty, climate change and the lack of water has made it increasingly difficult for poorer families to grow crops or raise animals, so the ‘barter system’ is failing.
Additionally, money is now needed to pay for everything in the country such as food, education, transport, electricity and drinking water. Today’s Zimbabweans need jobs to earn money, there are no jobs to be found in rural areas.
Ironically, today, the land allocation system that worked so well in the past, has become the limiting factor holding the country back from achieving 1st World status, and good living standards.
Today, out of necessity every homestead has to become an island, fending for themselves, and sadly due to inequality, some families have more money than others. The wealthier build better homes than the majority can afford. This, rather than promoting community spirit, now promotes just the opposite, fuelling jealousy and crime within the community.
Having widely dispersed homesteads in the rural areas, makes it vastly more difficult and expensive for the government, and service providers to provide the needed services for a community, such as; electricity, water, sewerage systems, schools, clinics and all the other services a community needs. These services need to be made available to all, in order to achieve 1st World status.
The lack of development in rural areas means that school children have to travel long distances to get to school. It also forces homesteads to travel long distances to obtain untreated water from local dams, which promotes sickness and disease.
CREATION OF TOWNS
The ideal situation would be to reform the existing land allocation and have all the homesteads in one area, by developing a town. This would make it far simpler and cheaper to provide all services and facilities needed to make Zimbabwe a 1st World Nation.
The important services include: power and clean water, but other things like road development, healthcare, sports and recreational facilities together with other infrastructure development, also become easier to implement. Linking one town to the next with tar roads, actually cuts down the number of roads needed in the country. There is no need to have hundreds of dirt roads linking all the homesteads, just one main road is needed into each town.
Understanding that radical change and social reform is needed in order to develop the country and improve living standards, is one thing, but, how can this be achieved?
The government's legalisation of the cannabis market may provide the answer.
LEGALISATION OF CANNABIS GROWING - FOR MEDICINE
There are several major reasons that legalising cannabis has to be approached carefully:- Firstly, there is a need to eradicate illegal production of cannabis as that will become available to the criminal drug dealers within the country. If unchecked these drug dealers will go to war with each other and turn the country into a bloodbath similar to that which has happened in South America within countries like Colombia.
POTS Consulting , Sellbridge and partners intend to lay a working model and roadmap proposal to the Zimbabwe government for the registration of cannabis growers in Zimbabwe, based upon our 'Green Bank' model, this will include the required financing for the growing and processing of cannabis to supply 'Medical CBD' to the growing World CBD market.
The eradication of illegally grown cannabis will be assisted because the 'Green Bank' will pay much more money per Kg than the criminals are offering. No grower will want to grow cannabis illegally, when the farmers can grow it legally and be paid more for their crop.
The second major reason for a country to create a cannabis market, should be to provide employment and incomes in the poorest of the rural communities in the country. It doesn’t benefit the country at all to allow an individual rich farmer to obtain a licence, that would only make the rich farmer richer, and doesn’t help solve poverty issues within the country. Allowing poorer communities to set up community farming co-operatives, and get licences to grow cannabis, promotes growth at the 'Grass Roots' level in a country. This type of growth makes the whole country financially richer.
Finally, if a community obtains a licence to grow cannabis legally, they will be intolerant of any community member growing illegal cannabis as this will damage the communities market. The community themselves will force the aberrant community member to cease the growing of illegal cannabis. Thus bringing about change from within.
Medical CBD (Cannabidiol) is helpful with the following diseases and conditions:- cancer and cancer treatments - epilepsy and other neurological disorders - anxiety and depression - insomnia and sleep disorders - Ppin and inflammation - diabetes and diabetic nerve pain - cardiovascular disease - arthritis - spasms - Multiple Sclerosis - PTSD - stress relief and many other medical conditions.
Sellbridge & partners, will bring with them all the necessary elements for a complete working solution including the following:- the medical pharmaceutical processors who will need a licence to establish an industrial scale CBD processing plant within the country. This processing plant must be 'future-proofed' and be capable of processing up to 1,300 tonnes of raw cannabis per day, to allow for steady expansion. The processors have GUARANTEED ZIMBABWE AN ORDER FOR 40,000Kgs of Processed CBD a month, this means the pilot site should be designed to grow to be capable of growing 400,000 tonnes of cannabis a month, in order to satisfy the requirement for 40,000 Kgs of Medical CBD.
Sellbridge will apply for a banking licence and will build and open a 'Green' bank in the country. This bank can provide loans to prospective licence seekers, wishing to grow cannabis for the medical industry.
Sellbridge will need a sizeable pilot site as it will require a substantial investment to establish a secure hydroponics cannabis growing site, which will include a pilot nursery / cloning site to grow the correct strains of cannabis. The aim of the nursery is to supply the whole Zimbabwe cannabis grower market with good quality seeds of the correct strain to process into 'Medicinal CBD'.
Additionally, this pilot site will be able to provide hydroponics education to the prospective community farming associations or co-operatives, teaching them about growing of cannabis and vegetables hydroponically.
The same site will have the industrial scale processing plant so that crops from the pilot site and in the future from other growers, will be delivered to the processing plant for processing into Medical CBD. Future plans may include a pharmaceutical production plant can be considered to take the CBD isolate, and convert it into actual final packaged medical products.
The development of a town next to the pilot site and possibly an airport can be considered to export the final CBD product.
BRINGING ABOUT THE VISION
Most people accept that radical change is required to become a 1st World Nation and that the centralisation of rural homesteads into towns, could be an ideal way to bring about the radical reformation needed to transform Zimbabwe into a 1st World Nation.
A workable model would be needed that will allow fairly rapid change within the rural areas, and more importantly, provision of the finance needed to enable communities to grow the cannabis.
The issues that need to be addressed in order to bring about this major social reform include the following:-
Discussions will be held with all rural communities wishing to form co-operatives to grow medical cannabis. Those communities that are granted licences can grow cannabis and share the revenue as an income between every homestead in the community if they wish, however a more radical proposal can be made to change the face of Zimbabwe.
During the talks with a community wishing to grow medical cannabis, an alternative option will be discussed, that of the option for them to consider using the cannabis revenue to develop a new town for the community.
An explanation of the changes that would be needed to be made within the community and a social impact assessment would need to be undertaken.
The option of building a new town for the community would need to be agreed by the majority of the local community. Those wishing not to participate, those that would not be prepared to relocate into the town, can choose to opt out of the scheme. The building of a new town would require the planned relocation of the outlying homesteads.
The community will need to form a community farming co-operative, a chairman and a committee to represent that community would need to be elected.
There will be certain conditions the growers will have to agree to before they will get issued a draft licence from the registration authority, for example one of these conditions may be that the grower co-operatives must grow 80% cannabis and 20% foodstuffs.
It is no good creating one industry at the expense of another within a country, and food production needs to be promoted. Once all the conditions have been met and agreed, the farmers co-operative and the community will be issued a draft licence that they can take to the 'Green Bank' to apply for a loan. Loans for hydroponically grown cannabis can be granted to suitable community farming co-operatives by the 'Green Bank'.
Education in hydroponics agriculture will be given to the co-operatives at the pilot hydroponics farm established by Sellbridge in the country.
Any loans would need to address the building of the hydroponics centre with high security, and the creation of new housing in the new town area for any homesteads that are displaced due to the creation of the town site or the hydroponics centre.
It is imperative that the CBD processors are involved in the processing of applications for cannabis grower licences, as they are the only ones who know what their current annual market is for the CBD and therefore the only entity who will know how many licence applications need to be granted. The registration authority could be a joint venture partner with thre government, working in partnership to issue the licences to the poorer rural community farming co-operatives.
For example the current order for CBD from Sellbridges' partner processor is 40,000kg of CBD per month. Without that knowledge, the issuing body, may issue too many licences. This would result in an over production of cannabis, therefore forcing the price down. Too few licences and the processors might lose their market share to competitors. Each year the target amount of CBD is expected to grow and therefore more licences can be granted each year.
Additionally the registration authority needs to enforce the rules and regulations that the community farming co-operatives agreed with. This may include rules such as; the growing of 80% cannabis 20% foodstuff rule. These inspections need to be done on a regular basis at each co-operative to maintain regulatory compliance. It is vital that the quality of the seeds is consistently high, and of an authorised strain of cannabis. This will then be issued to the farmers from the pilot plant nursery.
Any deviation from the seeds supplied by the 'Green Bank', will adversely affect the quality of the CBD.
Crop assessments and on-site security need to be completed during the growing season, to ensure that the growers are not releasing some of the crop to the ‘Black Market’.
Crop quality will be maintained because the 'Green' bank will issue all the cannabis seeds to the growers from the pilot nursery, all seed will be of the correct strain of cannabis to maintain the desired CBD content.
Unlike the illegal cannabis growing market where only the buds are harvested and sold and the rest of the plant is discarded. For CBD the whole cannabis plant will be harvested and sent to the processing plant, this means a lot more money for the farmers. The crop will be weighed, the water content of the crop will be calculated and deducted from the weight. government tax will be deducted ttogether with any agreed loan repayments. These will be repaid to the Green Bank. The remainder will be paid in cash or bank credit to the farmer's co-operative.
As the processors market grows, each year, new licences will be issued within the country.
There are several major reasons that legalising cannabis has to be approached carefully. The first is there is a need to eradicate illegal production of cannabis, otherwise, that will become available to the criminal drug dealers within a country. Eventually if unchecked, these drug dealers will go to war with each other and turn the country into a bloodbath similar to that which has happened in South America, within countries like Colombia.
The eradication of illegally grown cannabis will be assisted by this process as effectively the 'Green' bank by paying for the whole cannabis plant not just the buds, they will be paying 3 times the amount of money per Kg that the criminals are offering for the buds alone.
Not many farmers will want to grow cannabis illegally, when they can grow it legally and be paid far more for their crop than the ‘Black Market’ value.
Secondly the major reason for a country to create a cannabis market should be to provide employment and incomes in the poorest of the rural communities in the country. It doesn’t benefit the country at all to allow an individual rich farmer to obtain a licence, that would only make the rich farmer richer and doesn’t help solve poverty issues within the country. The Zimbabwean Government shouldn’t take a short-term view of gaining revenue from the issuing of licences as this removes the possibility for poor communities to be involved. Instead setting up poorer communities with the licences to grow cannabis promotes growth at the 'Grass Roots' level in a country, this type of growth makes the whole country financially richer.
Once a community has identified the land to grow the cannabis on and has obtained a licence, it is suggested that the Co-operative operate in a similar way to a company with a Board of Directors or a committee that is in charge of the ‘Community Development Budget’ on behalf of the whole community.
For those communities who decide to opt for the New Town concept, Sellbridge has a Community Development plan to help the community build a town from the cannabis revenue.
A suitable site for the new town needs to be identified and if any homesteads need to be relocated to establish the cannabis growing area or to build the new town site, those homesteads would be the first to be offered New housing in the proposed town area. We propose that the town is built in stages by the community itself. Thus providing long term employment for community residents, such as plumbers, bricklayers, builders, carpenters and civil engineers. Education will be needed to create those craftsmen.
Every year new housing and other town developments could be developed in the town area with cash provided from the cannabis crops, such as shopping areas, recreational areas, offices, schools, clinics, hospitals and all the essential services.
Each year community members could be offered the chance to exchange their current homesteads around the town and relocate to a modern house at no cost funded by the community budget. Discussions with the country’s authorities will be needed as the new house should come with Title Deeds.
Two major benefits will come from the issuance of Title Deeds for the new houses, firstly the community member will be able to approach a bank in order to get a loan to start their own business in the new town area. Some by taking advantage of all the new business premises with in the new town, others can apply for a licence from the new town council, to operate businesses on the freed up community land. They can operate agricultural businesses such as:- arable farming, chicken farms, piggeries, feed-lots, abbatoirs or other land related businesses.
The current land allocation system in poor communities has resulted in land that is under-utilised and undeveloped as most families do not have the money to do anything with the land they sit on, consequently 90% of rural areas contain land that will never be developed due to the lack of local jobs and therefore the lack of money in the area. Redeployment of that land, by the community will further enhance employment opportunities for the community by allowing the community to come up with new money making uses for the land.
The land that is given up around the new town area as a result of the relocation of community members into the town, will not be lost; it would just be freed up and redeployed for Community agriculture projects, projects that the community will decide on and be a part of, such as crop sharing schemes sports and recreational areas and community grazing land for the community member’s animals. Alternatively, the committee might decide to designate some of the land as a CBD (Central Business District) and erect manufacturing premises and offices in order to encourage community members and outside business people to establish businesses in the new town. All of these developments would increase the amount of employment in the area.
The second benefit is that the town council will be able to charge rates for all the houses in order to further develop the town.
FINDING THE PILOT COMMUNITY
A careful and diligent approach should be made to convince an initial community to agree to undertake the new town development project. This could be a single small community to take up the challenge and prove the validity of the model.
With one successful community that can demonstrate the direct benefits to other communities, we believe many other communities will take the plunge and launch similar projects for themselves. In this way Zimbabwe will be transformed fairly rapidly into a First World Nation by the people for the people and at no cost to the Government.
Communities growing the cannabis for Medical CBD can use the revenue from the cannabis crop, to build a new town in the community area and provide free housing for the community members together with all the infrastructure needed in a town, such as schools, clinics, doctors, roads, power stations, electricity services, water services, water treatment and sewage systems, sports and recreational facilities, parks and cemeteries.
The whole town can be built for free from the revenue generated from the growing of the cannabis. For example a community that takes a loan to establish a hydroponics site large enough to produce 5 tonnes of cannabis a month would turnover in the region of US $682,000 per month, after paying salaries, expenses, government tax and the repayment of the loan to the Green Bank, that might leave US $364,000 per month to start the town development.
Community members will be encouraged to give up their homesteads and move into the town area in exchange for a free modern 3 bedroom house on a sizeable plot, with Title Deeds (If the Government approves the plan). The freed up exchanged for the modern house in the town, will become the property of the community and can be redeployed for further community agriculture projects, or the creation of business areas.
One of the challenges to be overcome is the question of family graves left behind when the families relocate to the town. The suggestion would be for that area to be fenced off and treated as a mini cemetery, recognised by the town as sacred land, this plot could be large enough to accommodate any other family members that wish to be interred next to their ancestors. However, there will be a new and official cemetery area within the new town as a central cemetery, that would be maintained and looked after by the Town Council. The town itself will be built by the community this in itself will provide employment. Once there are shops and services and business areas the community as a whole will have employment. True local government of the people, by the people, for the people!
CURRENT ZIMBABWE MARKET
Sellbridge brings an immediate GUARANTEED ORDER to Zimbabwe for 40,000Kg per month of processed medical CBD. All of which can be catered for from the Pilot site if the site is between 20,000 and 40,000 hectares.
As the processors demand globally for CBD grows, the Regulatory Authority will determine how many Grower Licences can be issued to meet current demand. Growing too much will devalue the World market price.
The current market for CBD is 40,000Kg per month, however this market is growing rapidly. This means that a smaller number of growers can be issued with licences at the initial startup. However as the world market expands for CBD, the number of farmers issued with a licence will continue to expand. This will create many jobs in the poorer rural areas of Zimbabwe.
The Regulatory Authority will invite farmers to Register as Licensed cannabis Growers with the Regulatory Authority. Farming communities will be means tested to ensure that priority will be given to the poorer areas and the poorer farmers.
Farming Co-operatives allow a greater number of homesteads to benefit from one license and will help spread the income more evenly throughout the community. Also, there is greater security and protection afforded as part of a group rather than being an individual farmer.
CBD Current Monthly Demand 40,000Kg
5% of cannabis crop is processed is turned into CBD
Therefore, in order to meet 40,000Kg per month, the tonnage of dry cannabis required is 1600 Metric tonnes per month (Dry) 800 Metric Tonnes Per Month (Dry).
40,000Kgs of CBD represents an initial turnover of US$ 400m per month, when fully operational.
THE FUTURE MARKET
Zimbabwe has the capacity to produce vast quantities of cannabis per annum.
The revenues that this potential market can provide will change Zimbabwe.
Sellbridge intend to increase their production of cannabis up to 100,000 tonnes per annum over the course of 10 years.
If this growth is achieved, this represents after 10 years a future annual turnover of US $200 billion US.
At an assumed rate of 25% tax from the Government it represents Annual revenues to Zimbabwe Government of approximately US $ 50bn US.
Sellbridge wish to invest part of the proceeds from the production of CBD back into various Humanitarian and Socio Economic projects within Zimbabwe, with the sole aim of enabling the following
• To Help Eradicate Poverty in Zimbabwe.
• Promote Organic Agriculture.
• To Promote a other GMO FREE Crops.
• To Promote Disease Control.
• To Reduce Cancer and HIV and AIDS deaths and promote alternative medication to prolong life and hopefully cure the disease within Zimbabwe and around the World.
• To Create Jobs and Promote Investment Opportunities in line with the Objective, Vision and Mission.
• Research will prove that cannabis is the Solution for Health and Economic Development in Zimbabwe as well as job creation.